This is not exactly crafting, but a sensory experience / learning tip.
I’ve got really bad handwriting. And this is not that kind of ”oh no, my handwriting is sooo terrible, could someone else take notes” -type of whine, just a fact: my handwriting is really quite ugly and nearly illegible. The reason is simple: when at school it was time to learn to write in cursive, I thought this was a complete waste of time – I knew how to write, what difference did it make how it looked. (You might find some vestiges of this attitude in this blog, ahem.) So, I just hurried through the boring exercises and concentrated on the ones where it was all about the content.
Well, later in life I have noticed that it would be nice if other people were able to decipher my handwriting. Especially in teaching it would come in handy. You can waste surprising amounts of time and energy explaining to smart-ass teenagers that ”Yes, a 14 year old can read that – oh you are 15 already, well even more so then – no, it doesn’t say anything about boots, it says book, open your books on page 36 – well, when I was at school handwriting was taught differently, it changes, Egyptians used hieroglyphs, you know – yeah right, and dinosaurs were running in my school yard, now open your books and grab your pens.”
So now that my oldest one has begun school and is learning writing, I have decided that we should make a point of doing those writing exercises properly. A few days ago she had to practice spelling numerals (which are tricky in French, I always write ”cinque” even though it’s just ”cinq” – I don’t seem to believe there’s no unnecessary tail hanging onto this one). Writing on paper becomes very quickly tedious erasing and smudging, so I thought we’d do as they did in the olden days, write on sand with a stick. But as we didn’t have any sand, I poured some sugar on a plate and she wrote on that with a chopstick. This worked out very nicely, it was more fun than writing on paper and it was really easy to correct any misspellings: you just shake the plate.
I let the twins have a try too, and they drew for a while, but then one of them realized what was on his plate and licked it clean in no time. So maybe next time we’ll try flour. Or salt.